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Hoax call case: Police zero in on a woman PSU employee

Last Updated: Monday, September 23, 2013 - 22:36

New Delhi: A woman working with a public sector firm is alleged to have imitated Congress president Sonia Gandhi voice when she made calls to Attorney General GE Vahanvati regarding some high-profile cases in the Supreme Court following which he lodged a police complaint.

The number displayed on the phone of Attorney General was that from the exchange of the Public Sector Undertaking office. In all seven calls were made to Vahanvati, official sources said.

Initially the caller posed herself as Sonia Gandhi and later made claims that she was calling from her back office of the Congress president, the sources said.

A discreet probe was carried out by central security agencies after which the Attorney General informed the Government which advised him to register a complaint with the Economic Offences Wing of Delhi Police.

Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde told reporters on the sidelines of National Integration Council meeting that Delhi Police has begun a preliminary enquiry into the hoax telephone call and will register an FIR after necessary formalities.

The woman, said to be a PSU worker, had allegedly imitated Sonia and managed to convincingly sound unhappy while talking to Vahanvati over what she said was his handling of several crucial and high profile cases, including those related to coal allocations.

She was allegedly asked by someone linked to the coal scam to talk to Vahanvati apparently to influence his opinion on the scam before Supreme Court.

A Delhi Police spokesperson said it has received a complaint from the Attorney General of India. "We have received a complaint from the Attorney General and we are conducting a preliminary enquiry into it," the spokesperson said. "As soon as something of public interest comes to light we will inform the press," the spokesperson said.

The alleged hoax caller pretending to be Sonia is said to have told Vahanvati that she was calling from New York--where she was actually staying at that time for a medical check-up. She had left for abroad on September two and returned on September 11.

The woman pretending to be Sonia is stated to have told him that he should consider "lying low and taking fewer responsibilities".

BJP national spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad in reply to a question on the issue said the party would like to speak about it after going through all the facts amid speculation that the hoax call could have been an attempt to influence the coal allocation scam case.

Prasad, however, utilised the media report to take a swipe at Vahanvati.

"But we would like to ask how many leaders is the Attorney General talking to about the pending corruption cases." He also sought to know whether the AG routinely takes up calls on such cases.

Prasad claimed that for the first time in the history of independent India, the high office of Attorney General had to depose in a corruption case, referring to the 2G spectrum issue.


First Published: Monday, September 23, 2013 - 22:36

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